Better than store-bought bottled – yes you can make your own BBQ sauce at home! This is the best down-home All American Barbecue Sauce!
With summer almost here and long sunny days approaching, what’s better than a good BBQ?
Barbecuing is a simple and healthy cooking method. It gives great flavor without having to add a lot of fat during preparation.
To become a experienced backyard professional – Make your own barbecue sauce for basting and dipping.
When to apply sauce?
The best time to sauce a grilled (BBQ) chicken is when it’s nearly cooked – after it’s cooked, but wait until it is no more than a few minutes away from being done before you sauce it. You’re not trying to cook the sauce, and it takes no more than a few minutes to get the sauce to bind to the skin and form a sort of glaze and gather up some quick smokey flavor.
Use as a “mopping” sauce to baste the meat while it was cooking (in the late stage) and as a dipping sauce when it is served.
BBQ sauce can be a great fit for more than just brushing on meat on the grill – it’s a worthy condiment for myriad meals. Barbecue sauce can be used to cook meatballs in, glaze wings, top meatloaf, smear on a pizza as a base, a binder for burritos, the base for homemade baked beans, sauce for ribs – and of course, my favorite: Barbecue Chicken with homemade bbq sauce!
First off I love the taste sensation of good barbeque sauce and my favorite is sweet-ish with a touch of tang, and a little heat.
It’s a combination of sweet, from natural sugars and apricots (not high fructose corn syrup in most commercial brands) and smoky flavors from smoked paprika and dried pasilla chiles.
Never start with ketchup – you need tomatoes for texture and a true natural tomato flavor.
Pasilla Dried Chiles are named for its dark, wrinkled skin and pronounced pah-SEE-yah (literally “little raisin”), it is a mild to medium-hot, rich-flavored chile. Find them in most Mexican groceries, some well-stocked general groceries, health food stores and via the internet. Guajillo or ancho chiles would work as well. Each chile has it’s own personality – flavor profile and are rated by the Scoville scale – a measurement of the pungency (spicy heat) of chile peppers. These chiles will add a welcomed depth of flavor.
There are seemingly endless selections of barbecue sauces on store shelves these days – making your own is immensely satisfying and as simple as simmering a few fresh staples (hello, onions and garlic) and pantry ingredients (fire roasted canned tomatoes, coconut palm sugar and molasses) together.
To Make the Sauce:
Simply sauté onions and garlic until nicely colored, add the rest of the ingredients – stir and cook 30 minutes…
that was easy huh? Taste for salt, add some water for consistency and blitz in a small food processor for a puréed sauce (or leave chunky.)
In my opinion, most supermarket barbecue sauces taste too generic: they’re usually a mix of a tomato base with some smoke flavoring (which always tastes artificial) vinegar, and spices added. They almost always err on the side of being cloyingly sweet, since many use high-fructose corn syrup—sometimes as the main ingredient.
A very popular Barbecue Sauce INGREDIENTS: (Hint: UGH!)
Tomato juice from concentrate (water, tomato paste), high fructose corn syrup, corn syrup, distilled vinegar, molasses, less than 2% of: salt, mustard bran, tomato fiber, natural flavors, spices, guar gum, paprika (spice and color), pectin, carob bean gum. Undesirable!
Maker’s Mark Gourmet Sauce Ingredients: (Wouldn’t you guess this on was high quality?)
Now, that special taste has been captured in an elegant, equally distinctive gourmet sauce (they say!) Ingredients: Tomato Puree, Distilled Vinegar, Corn Sweetener, Pineapple, Sugar, Maker’s Mark Bourbon, Salt, Spices, Applesauce, Cornstarch, Lemon Juice, Raisins, Hydrolyzed Soy Protein, Molasses, Autolyzed Yeat, Carmel Color, Onion and Garlic Powder, Anchioves and/or Sardines, Natural Flavorings, Monosodium Glutamate, Paprika, Tamarinds, Cloves, Chili Peppers, Eschallots, Sodium Benzoate as a Preservative. Absolutely unsavory ingredients I say… so many chemicals!
Just like barbecue styles, barbecue sauces vary greatly depending on the region.
Here’s a brief primer on the geographic diversity of barbecue sauce.
6 Sauces, 6 Regions:
Kentucky Bourbon: The addition of Kentucky’s oak-aged bourbon adds a smooth, smoky complexity to ketchup, cider vinegar, molasses, spicy brown mustard, liquid smoke and steak sauce. Some recipes also include bacon fat.
Sweet Carolina Mustard: Traditional yellow mustard is typically the base for this bright sauce, with an ingredient list that typically includes apple juice, brown sugar, honey, molasses, garlic, onion, black pepper and sweet cocoa powder.
North Carolina Vinegar: Distilled white vinegar, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, kosher salt and cayenne pepper define this famed and slightly sour sauce. In the Eastern part of the state, they punch up the heat even more.
Kansas City: The signature here is sweet and smoky, thanks to light corn syrup, light brown sugar and molasses added to tomato paste, ketchup, cider vinegar, chile powder, Worcestershire sauce, celery salt and kosher salt. It’s a national staple.
Louisiana Sweet: To a tangy tomato-vinegar based sauce, Louisianans have been known to add molasses, sweet sherry and packed brown sugar.
Alabama White: This creamy, ranch-style barbecue sauce is a point of state pride and looks nothing like its red-hued siblings — except that folks love dunking whole barbecued chickens in huge vats of it. The basic combination is mayo, white wine vinegar, black pepper, granulated sugar and salt. Some grill masters make it spicier by using whole black peppercorns.
I hope you enjoy making and “mopping up” this yummy sauce!